This morning I went to the Palace of Justice in Putrajaya for the hearing of the “Allah” case.
The Federal Court has reserved judgement in the leave application by Catholic weekly Herald to challenge the Home Ministry over the ban on the use of the word “Allah”.
The seven-man panel are Chief Justice Arifin Zakaria, Court of Appeal president Justice Raus Sharif, Chief Judge of Malaya Justice Zulkefli Ahmad Makinudin, Chief Judge of Sabah and Sarawak Justice Richard Malanjum and Federal Court judges Justices Suriyadi Halim Omar, Zainun Ali and Jeffrey Tan.
In the above article, Malaysian Insider reported that the Sultan of Selangor told the Herald and Malay Bible to stop using the word Allah as the translation of the word god.
NST reported that the Sultan of Selangor said:
“This is because ‘Kalimah Allah’ for the Muslims refers to the ‘One God’, prescribed in the Surah Al-Ikhlas (in the Al-Quran). The people of Selangor, especially, must respect and adhere to the ‘muzakarah’ (decision) made by the National Fatwa Committee, Selangor Fatwa Committee, laws as well as the unanimous decision made by the Court of Appeal in the case involving the Home Minister and eight others versus the Titular Roman Catholic Archbishop of Kuala Lumpur on Oct 14, 2013.”
On October 14, 2013, the Court of Appeal ruled unanimously against allowing the Catholic Church to use the word “Allah” in its weekly publication the Herald; Justice Datuk Seri Mohamed Apandi Ali said:
“It is our common finding that the usage of the name ‘Allah’ is not an integral part of the faith and practice of Christianity. From such finding, we find no reason why the respondent is so adamant to use the name ‘Allah’ in their weekly publication. Such usage, if allowed, will inevitably cause confusion within the community.”
What he said is true for Allah is not the name of Christian god and the translation of the word god to the Malay language is tuhan and not Allah; in fact a lot of Christians outside of Malaysia think that it is wrong to call Christian god as Allah.
But some Christians in Selangor do not respect the Sultan’s decree and the ruling made by the Court of Appeal and still want to call their god Allah.
Malaysian Insider, Dec 27, 2013.
We must understand that as the head of state of Selangor, the Sultan of Selangor is also Selangor’s head of the religion of Islam; so it is the Sultan’s duty to protect Islam; and the Sultan has the rights to do so according the Federal Constitution of Malaysia.
And Article 11(4) of the Federal Constitution gives the Sultan Selangor the rights to control or restrict the propagation of any religious doctrine or belief among persons professing the religion of Islam in Selangor.
So to the Christians in Selangor, please respect the Sultan of Selangor as he is our head of state and please respect the laws of Malaysia.
I really hope Selangor’s Menteri Besar has not forgotten the 10 undertakings that he pledged to the Sultan of Selangor on May 14, 2013.